We used to use Wirecast for switching and streaming the Collegedale Community Church Webcast before switching to a Newtek VT5 based system instead.
Wirecast is an affordable program with great potential. It works well to put on a basic webcast with 1 or 2 firewire cameras, PowerPoint from a presentation computer, lower thirds graphics and a web quality archive of the event. It even includes streaming presets for a number of free (advertising supported) content distribution network providers which makes getting started pretty easy.
However, I have bumped into a few limitations which have not been resolved as of late 2009. Issues include:
- Firewire jiggle
- DVD creation is cumbersome & difficult at best
- Poor video quality and loss of aspect ratio if cameras are connected after wirecast is open
- Wirecast crashes result in loss of recorded content (or expensive recovery service at best)
- Loss of audio during broadcast This one may have been fixed but can't say for sure.
- Closed circuit (external display) output is not officially supported on Windows There is a workaround for this though. Also, you can't position or resize the preview and main windows independently.
- Preview and live windows do not auto switch
- Poor DP performance on XP SP2 This may be fixed with a later release but I have not tested it personally.